Sun Safety and Skin Cancer Prevention

-Provided by the Geisel School of Medicine's Dermatology Interest Group (DIG) at Dartmouth. 

Geisel students are proud to promote healthy skin habits!

The Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth and Dartmouth Campus has been recognized as a Skin Smart Campus by The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention. Ensuring the well-being of our students, we are providing a safe and healthy learning and living environment on and off campus, pledging to keep indoor tanning devices off our campus and our affiliated buildings. We also promote skin cancer prevention policies and education.

The Indoor Tan-Free Skin Smart Campus Initiative is sponsored by the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention in response to the 2014 U.S. Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer which concluded that there is a strong association between increased risk of skin cancer and indoor tanning use. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure from indoor tanning is completely avoidable which allows for interventions to help reduce skin-cancer related illness and deaths. Numerous studies have found that skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the United States, with melanoma as one of the most common cancers diagnosed among young adults. According to The International Agency for Research on Cancer Working Group, the use of indoor tanning facilities before the age of 35 increases the risk for melanoma by 75 percent.

Geisel students are passionate about promoting awareness for sun protection and healthy skin habits. Here in the Upper Valley students are active year-round with outdoor activities- especially in the winter season for snow sports. This exposure INCREASES student's risk for skin damaging UV radiation. Snow can reflect up to 90% of the sun's UV rays, and even on cloudy, rainy, or snowy days that UV rays aren't felt- they are still working!  DIG is excited to promote our new links for easy access to information on sun protection, skin cancer, and resources for early detection and prevention of skin damage. 


Did you know…….

  • Sun exposure can damage your skin in as little as 5-10 minutes.
  • Even without a burn, sun exposure raises skin cancer risk. Even if you are tan or your skin type is dark and your skin does not redden, the sun can cause cellular damage that can lead to cancer.

  • 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 70.
  • Having 5 or more sunburns doubles your risk for melanoma.
  • When detected early, the 5-year survival rate for melanoma is 99 percent.

Provided by the Skin Cancer Foundation 

Additional Resources:

Skin Cancer Facts & Statistics

Don’t Fry Day

Additional Resources for Sun Safety: 

Sun Safety Information from The Environmental Protection Agency:

The UV index informs our choices for sun protection. Click here to find your current UV level. Scroll down to view a chart explaining the index levels & the steps we should take to protect our skin: (scroll down for helpful chart)

Additional information from Dartmouth's Dermatology Clinic: 

Dartmouth Health's Dermatology Clinic: Protecting Your Skin from Sun